Students with problems learning to read will often have problems with comprehension for single alphabet letters and their sounds. The Sounds of Words can be helpful in this area as well. The parent/teacher can choose very short, simple words familiar to the learner which feature the usual sounds of the consonants and short vowel sounds. Then help the struggling reader write and decode the words, discovering the "sound spelling." You will need to use an alphabet chart, and you will help the learner concretely and multi-sensorily work with the letters and their sounds. Singing the alphabet song, touching each letter, then finding the letter to write, and repeating the sound of the letter while writing it, will provide practice. And, if the student has difficulty copying the letter, the teacher/parent can write it and allow her/him the opportunity to trace it while discovering each letter for the illustrating word.

Connecting the letters to simple familiar spoken words helps the struggling learner comprehend the alphabet and its sounds. And if the student continues to have difficulty saying the letter names and their sounds, he/she can be helped by adding the activity of the manipulation of oversized letters. If the parent/teacher needs to use this activity, it is very important to use very familiar simple words. Introduce writing simultaneously, and teach the simple vowel-consonant patterns, as detailed in The Sounds Of Words procedure.

The teacher/parent should feel very free to use any short, simple words that interest the struggling learner. The goal is for her/him to make the connection between the words and the letters, thus comprehending the alphabet and its sounds. I have used words related to animals, food, songs, NASCAR, etc., etc. Anything goes, as long as it is short and simple, and G-rated!


Anita Landoll

Anita Landoll

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